TRAVEL

What Will the Alabama Super Tea Party Majority Do Next?

The Big Picture – by Glynn Wilson – CAMP GUNTER HILL, Ala. – The rain has finally stopped in Montgomery, after a February deluge that swelled creeks to overflowing and made for a soggy government tea party downtown. The boys of Agribusiness munched on shrimp and pimento cheese and crackers Tuesday night, giving legislators an…

Camp Autauga Creek: Assault on Montgomery Round Two, 2013

By Glynn Wilson – CAMP AUTAUGA CREEK, Ala. — Jefferson and I are settled into a new campsite just northwest of Montgomery. You can smell the corruption in the air, literarily, from International Paper’s mill not far from here. It’s right by a train track too. A coal train came by this afternoon. I grabbed…

Scotland to Celebrate 175th Anniversary of John Muir’s Birth

“One touch of nature makes all the world kin.” – John Muir, in The Cruise of the Corwin (1917) Chapter 3 (echoing William Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida: “One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.”) – By Glynn Wilson – Under the Microscope – It has come to my attention that there will be…

Photo Gallery: Talladega National Forest

Fall Moon by Lake Cheaha

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a view from atop Mount Cheaha, the highest point in Alabama at 2,407 feet above sea level. If a plan goes forward to lease virtually all of the land in this view to a mining company like Halliburton for natural gas drilling, this public land set aside for future generations to…

Where Oh Where Have All the Wildlife Gone?

A stuffed owl on the wall of the Cheaha State Park Restaurant – The Big Picture – By Glynn Wilson – LAKE CHINNABEE CAMPGROUND, Ala. — Sitting quietly by the fire in the woods on a windless, moonlit night, with only the sound of firewood crackling and coon dogs off in the distance — and…

Talladega National Forest Still At Risk From Fracking?

BREAKING DOWN for the MOJO ROAD – We’re heading into the woods for a few days for more photos and video footage from the Talladega National Forest, at risk from natural gas fracking. Happy Thanksgiving. A spokesperson for the U.S. Forest Service confirmed Tuesday that the Bureau of Land Management is still planning to hold…

Maiden Voyage of the Roadship Washington

A Lake Coleman campsite, just a short walk through the forest to the lake Secret Vistas by Glynn Wilson When the summer heat begins to fade away, the days grow shorter and the leaves start falling from the trees and changing colors, I don’t know about you but it’s hard to resist packing up the…

Appeals Court Rules Federal, State Agencies Must Consider Environmental Impacts of Building Roads

The U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that the North Carolina Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration illegally failed to consider and disclose the potential sprawl-inducing impacts of a 20-mile highway bypass near Charlotte. It is ruling that has national implications, according to the Southern Environmental Law Center, and could impact the…

Gas Fracking Coming to Talladega National Forest?

by Glynn Wilson TALLADEGA, Ala. — An unknown mining company has prompted the federal Bureau of Land Management to offer up 43,000 acres in the national forest near Mt. Cheaha for oil and gas extraction that could involve hydraulic fracturing or “fracking,” a controversial drilling practice that some states such as New York and Vermont…

Looking Glass Falls in the Pisgah National Forest

Glynn Wilson Looking Glass Falls, 60 feet tall, is one of the most popular falls in Western North Carolina, according to the National Forest Service. The name “Looking Glass” comes from Looking Glass Rock, where water freezes on its sides in the winter and then glistens in the sunlight like a mirror or looking glass.…

Day Tripping to the Capital of Georgia

Secret Vistas by Glynn Wilson ATLANTA, Ga. — Got a good reason, for taking the easy way out now? Tired of the scene your in and want to get out of town and be a Day Tripper? There’s no big teaser like a great big city in the Southeastern United States, a place crammed with…

Four Days and Nights Camping by Lake Chinnabee

Glynn Wilson An autumn view of the Lake Chinnabee campground with no one around (click on the image for a larger view) Secret Vistas by Glynn Wilson LAKE CHINNABEE, Ala. — It drizzled rain in the dark all the way from the Oxford, Alabama exit off Interstate 20 through Munford on Highway 21, making it…

Secret Vistas: Last Chance for Autumn Color

Secret Vistas by Glynn Wilson Woke up this mornin’ Turned on the Mac. Got the coffee started, Then looked out the window. The skies are gray, Rain’s on the way. It’s daylight savings time, What can I say? It is that time of year again, time to make the transition from the best of times,…

Secret Vistas: A Video of Cheaha State Park

It is a ridiculously easy day trip from Birmingham and points to the northeast to visit Cheaha State Park, located at 2407 feet above sea level, Alabama’s highest point in the Appalachian Mountains. The resort now has an arrowhead museum, which we feature in this video along with the view from the back deck at…

Secret Vistas: A Red-Bellied Woodpecker in Cheaha State Park

Glynn Wilson Click here or on the image for a larger view This red-bellied woodpecker [melanerpes carolinus], close cousin to the northern flicker, also known as the yellow-hammer, the state bird of Alabama, stopped by for a meal atop a pine tree by our campsite Saturday afternoon in Cheaha State Park in the lower Campground…